Rajshahi Krishi Unnayan Bank (RAKUB) disbursed around Taka 920.70 crore agriculture loans in the country’s northwest (NW) region during the first four months of the current 2020-21 fiscal year to facilitate increasing crop production and boosting rural economy.
The specialised commercial bank disbursed the loans through its 383 branches in all 16 districts under Rajshahi and Rangpur divisions.
Apart from this, the bank recovered loans of around Taka 703 crore including classified loan of Taka 80 crore besides deposit collection of Taka 111 crore during the same period.
The bank headquartered in Rajshahi has set a target of disbursing loans of Taka 2,850 crore, recovering Taka 2,480.63 crore and deposit collection of Taka 1,200 crore during the current fiscal year.
High officials of the bank revealed these while addressing a review meeting on progressing loan disbursement, recovery and deposit collection of the current fiscal held at the RAKUB’s Boardroom on Saturday.
The meeting also reviewed the disbursement progress of agriculture loans from the Prime Minister’s stimulus package fund.
The state-owned RAKUB has disbursed Taka 327 crore agriculture loans among 7,133 farmers through different branches from the Prime Minister’s stimulus package fund.
Bangladesh Bank has allocated Taka 416 crore fund from the stimulus package.
Bank Chairman Roisul Alam Mondal addressed the meeting virtually with Managing Director AKM Sajedur Rahman Khan in the chair. Deputy Managing Director Muhammad Idrish and General Managers Ruhul Amin and Mosaddeque Hossain also spoke.
Sajedur Rahman Khan said Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina announced a new stimulus package of Tk 5,000 crore in May last for farmers to boost agricultural production in the backdrop of the Covid-19.
He said the money from the fund has been disbursed among small and medium-scale farmers, including those in the poultry and dairy sector, in rural areas, at five percent interest.
“Small and medium-scale farmers in rural areas received loans from the fund, and they are using the money to yield agricultural products, flowers, fruits, fish and poultry,” he added.
Other than, the bank has disbursed Taka 36 crore loans among 1,062 entrepreneurs to revive cottage, micro, small and medium enterprises (CMSMEs) that have been affected financially due to the Covid-19 outbreak.
The Bangladesh Bank has allocated Taka 36 crore to RAKUB for the sector.
Besides, the existing disbursement of loans at four percent interest for spices is continuing and Taka 211 crore has, so far, been disbursed among 25,047 farmers.
Sajedur Rahman also said loan disbursement activities to other sectors of the stimulus package announced by the premier are progressing efficiently. “We are very much hopeful about attaining the cherished targets in these sectors within the stipulated time,” he added.
He also said the stimulus packages will ultimately contribute a lot towards recouping the losses being triggered by the Covid-19 pandemic.
As the largest development partner in agriculture as well as agro-based industry sector of the northwest Bangladesh, currently, the bank has adopted an effective work plan which is being implemented at the grassroots level to attain all the targets within the stipulated time.